As per usual, the online community has been eagerly awaiting the announcement of who will make the cut for the current round of Bravo's
, a reality TV series that pits chefs from around the country against each other in a variety of culinary challenges in order to win the title of 'Top Chef'... and also some money. In an announcement made by Bravo TV this morning, it looks as though Twin Cities chef Sara Johannes will be joining this year's elite cast.
Chef Johannes is currently the executive chef at Shoyu, a modern Japanese restaurant located inside the Minneapolis/St. Paul airport. Johannes is originally from Milwaukee, but after moving to the Twin Cities, originally to pursue a degree in theater, she ended up in St. Paul College's culinary arts program.
Bravo has been slowly releasing the names of the current cheftestapants throughout the week. On Monday they released round one, which included chefs from the East Coast, and on Tuesday they released the names of the West Coast contestants. This morning came the announcement of the Midwest chefs.
According to Bravo's website:
Chef Sara Johannes started as a Theater Major at the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities, before a redirection ultimately led her to culinary school. Falling in love with food at a young age, Sara could always be found diligently listening to the cooking shows on PBS on Saturday mornings and was inspired by her grandparents, who always let the season, mood, and occasion dictate their menu. Sara served as executive chef for Wolfgang Puck's Five Sixty restaurant in Dallas and WP24 in Los Angeles at the Ritz Carlton before heading back to Minneapolis. Currently, Sara serves as the executive chef at Shoyu at the Minneapolis St. Paul Airport.
Top Chef New Orleans begins its run on October 2 and will feature the usual band of pro-judges, including Padma Lakshmi, Tom Colicchio, Gail Simmons, Hugh Acheson, and Emeril Lagasse. In addition to the usual suspects we're also hearing about a slew of other guest judges and special appearances, which include the likes of John Besh, Leah Chase, Paul Prudhomme, Jon Favreau, Lea Michele, Anthony Mackie, Questlove, Jacques Pepin, David Chang, and Eddie Huang.